Analyze This (1999)

The personal development course I am in recently discussed an online set of personality tests by a group called Values Based Leader. Personality tests of any stripe really start ringing my skepticism alarms, especially having worked with the MBTI assessment in the past and finding it misleading. The tests I took are here. Results are below; comments follow.

First is a personality test of 22 questions over 4 minutes, rated on a 4-point scale from Strongly Disagree to Strongly Agree.

I started becoming skeptical about this one as soon as it started asking questions about small talk (that is, in the first question). The whole introvert vs. extrovert dichotomy has always felt like such an artificial construct. People already tend to identify as one or the other based on what they tend to do or what they try to avoid. Is it really helpful to define people with such binary categories, or are we doing them a disservice by bundling so many potentially unrelated tendencies together?

Anyway, these are my results. Very little is terribly surprising and it corresponds well with my MBTI results: I'm usually an INTP or INTJ. The bottom line here is what these results tell me and how well they correlate with existing observations. Clearly I can't take anything here at face value. It's true that I tend to be a logical, critical thinker who needs time to contemplate ideas and prefers efficiency. It's difficult to evaluate any of those blindspots, though, without input from living human beings. A personality test isn't and can't be emotional or empathetic, so how can it declare anyone unemotional? (For the record, the "fear of being wrong" is pretty spot-on, but who actually likes being wrong?)

The next bit is an exercise in which words representing Core Values must be dragged n' dropped into bins from Most to Least important. Only the Most Important values appear to be saved. Here are mine:
I had the most trouble deciding which values were least important or unimportant to me. Is Competition really not important? What about Results, whatever that means? Everything is important to me in the right context. Sometimes Results are what I want more than anything else, but I certainly won't get them without the Top Values listed above. Once again, not quite enlightening but I suppose that isn't the point. This stem seems designed to help with isolating values which you'd be willing to make sacrifices for, should it be necessary. 

Is there a way to discuss self-improvement and self-awareness without the breathless enthusiasm of a grade-school art teacher? Enthusiasm is refreshing but it should never oversimplify complex systems. That's how people crash economies. It's also how conspiracy theories become common knowledge.